You're right, it is very rare. That's why TekSavvy has such a loyal following. Their support is excellent, you talk to people that know what they're doing and aren't reading from a script. They also admit when they're having problems and say what the problem is and how long till its resolved.
If you're tech savvy yourself, just run a traceroute to figure out where your connection stops, then run a traceroute from the outside (via a friendly wireless access point or something) to see where the problem is from the outside. Then call tech support with these two IP addresses and any telltale information their reverse DNS lookup gives you, and tell the person on the other end that you've noticed network issues between the two points and would like to talk to someone knowledgeable regarding their current network issues.
Using this trick always gets me escalated within minutes to someone who actually knows what they're talking about -- they often think I'm a wholesaler who somehow called in on the wrong line. Generally the answers are something along the line of "Bob currently has router X offline in building Y -- the failover to carrier X's network doesn't seem to be kicking in. When Bill gets there with the new hardware (should be an hour or so), we'll have more information)."
Sure beats "Try restarting your computer again while closing one eye and kissing your modem" that you get at the lower levels.